AAT Kings reveal new Aboriginal Culture and Australia Highlights tour

The tour has launched with a New Season Sale with discounts available until 31 October 2023.

Margret Campbell performed a smoking ceremony at Blues Point Reserve in Sydney as part of Dreamtime Southern X experience. ©Destination NSW

Tour operator AAT Kings has launched its 2024/2025 touring season, announcing an Australian-first tour set to provide insight into Australia’s indigenous culture. The launch was marked by a media and travel industry cocktail lunch at Bennelong at Sydney Opera House on 21 September, where guests were briefed on the upcoming offering from the AAT Kings coach tours in Australia and New Zealand. A moving Welcome To Country was delivered by Margret Campbell of Dreamtime Southern X, followed by presentations from AAT Kings Group CEO, Ben Hall, and Tourism Australia Head of Indigenous Affairs, Phil Lockyer.

The Australian-first Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights tour is part of the 2024/2025 touring season. It showcases both urban and outback locations across Melbourne, Uluru, Sydney and Cairns over 13 days, with a focus on local connection, cultural immersion, sustainable footprints, wildlife and nature.

The new itinerary has been developed in response to Tourism Australia’s consumer insights reports, which documents market demand for Indigenous experiences. AAT Kings worked with Discover Aboriginal Experiences, part of Tourism Australia’s ‘Signature Experiences of Australia’ offering, to identify and curate Indigenous operators and activities.

Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel & Margret Campbell performing a smoking ceremony at Blues Point Reserve in Sydney as part of Dreamtime Southern X experience.
Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel ©Tourism Australia/Archie Sartracom & Margret Campbell performing a smoking ceremony at Blues Point Reserve in Sydney as part of Dreamtime Southern X experience. ©Destination NSW

“Our customers’ desire is to have more cultural experiences in our itineraries, and AAT Kings is committed to helping drive Indigenous tourism and play a leading role in increasing understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal culture – a major step towards reconciliation and support of First Nations people in Australia,” said Ben Hall, CEO of AAT Kings. “This new tour is just a glimpse into how AAT Kings is committed to growing our range of Indigenous experiences across our suite of travel products, to advocate and highlight the range and depth of Indigenous tourism experiences across Australia.”

Big Esso by Mabu Mabu, Victoria.
Big Esso by Mabu Mabu, Victoria. ©Visit Victoria

Tour highlights

  • Sunset drinks at Uluru, including an exclusive barbeque dinner and Dot Art Painting experience.
  • A behind-the-scenes Sydney Opera House tour, Dreamtime Walking Tour of the rocks and Indigenous Harbour Cruise in Sydney.
  • Great Barrier Reef trip with Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel.
  • A show-stopping lunch at Big Esso by Mabu Mabu in Melbourne’s Federation Square with cuisine by renowned Torres Strait chef Nornie Bero.

Optional inclusions:

  • The iconic Great Ocean Road and the Twelve Apostles or an Aboriginal Heritage Walk in the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne.
  • The BridgeClimb Sydney with an option to experience the Burrawa – Aboriginal Climb and a Royal Botanic Gardens Aboriginal Bush Tucker tour in Sydney.
  • A Daintree Dreaming Aboriginal Art and Culture tour or Madingalbay Ancient Indigenous Cultural Cruise in Cairns.

Both Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel and Big Esso by Mabu Mabu are two of four projects within the tour supported through AAT Kings Groups’ MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences and The TreadRight Foundation, alongside Maraki and Koorie Heritage Trust.

Mandingalbay Ancient Indigenous Tours
Mandingalbay Ancient Indigenous Tours © Tourism and Events Queensland

The Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights tour will have limited departures in 2024 and 2025. AAT Kings New Season Sale is on until 31 October 2023, and guests can save up to 15% with prices from $8,609 per person, twin share. The tour will commence in Melbourne and conclude in Cairns. For more information and to book visit the AAT Kings website.

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